Should Penn State Get The “Death” Penalty For Football?

A terrible tragedy has occurred on the campus and in the athletic dressing rooms at Pennsylvania State University. Assistant football coach, Jerry Sandusky, was found guilty of assaulting under aged boys in the locker room. Many of these kids were brought into contact with Sandusky through his charitable organization, The Second Mile.

Sandusky was convicted of 45 counts of child sexual abuse. These offenses occurred over a period of decades, and his boss, Penn State Head Coach Joe Paterno, along with the President of the University, were informed there was a problem. Those men ignored the rape of young boys to keep the University’s image sparkling clean. Penn State now has a new head coach and a new president, but the damage has been done.

Yahoo Sports has an article with an embedded Tavis Smiley interview video. Smiley is interviewing NCAA President Mark Emmert. Tavis asks the big question, “Should Penn State’s football program get the death penalty?”

Of course, Emmert could not answer the question because the NCAA is still going through their investigations. No charges or penalties will be accessed for a while, probably after the 2012 – 2013 football season.

If you are familiar with the Southern Methodist University football death penalty in 1986, you know that such action would have a decade long, negative effect on the university’s football program. SMU’s violations were about paying their football players. SMU had the best football team that money could buy for a couple of years .

Penn State University’s sins are in a whole new category. Because of the power given to former head football coach, Joe Paterno, an active pedophile was  allowed to continue his crimes while being shielded by Joe Paterno, and the Penn State University administration. This is shameful.

How severely do you think the NCAA should penalize the Penn State football program? Should the penalty extend itself further into other athletic programs? Should the Penn State football program receive the “death penalty” that Southern Methodist University got for a much lesser set of crimes?

What should we do with college football in the United States. I think you would agree that college football as we know it functions as a farm system for National Football League. Also, why are the universities allowed to make millions of dollars off their football programs, and not pay their athletes commensurately?

The reason that Penn State’s morals went off the tracks is simple. The athletic department and the university administration would not let any bad news be published about their programs. It was all about the money.

10 thoughts on “Should Penn State Get The “Death” Penalty For Football?”

  1. I’ve been very unpopularly saying that it’s not fair to the Penn State students since this thing broke and conservatives disagree but I don’t think the whole sports dept should be punished. Get RID of all those who had anything to do with the cover up. Don’t punish innocent athletes and everyone who loves Penn State football.

  2. You raise an interesting question, Bob. SMU broke NCAA rules and the NCAA reponded. At Penn State criminal laws were broken. To me this is not an issue for the NCAA. I would like to see any one who was envolved in the cover-up tried as accesories to the crime and punished accordingly. That’s my thinking, anyway.

  3. My problem with the Penn State fiasco is that this is not just a football thing. It is an institutional thing. If all you do is get rid of some people, the institution has not been penalized. I wouldn’t want to end all sports, but somehow any penalty needs to extend beyond just football.

  4. Thanks for your comment. You make a good argument. This is not really a football thing, this is a criminal thing. However, as an institution, Penn State needs to be penalized, too. How do you send an entire university to jail? As an institution, Penn State has been guilty of shielding scofflaws before as in their so-called investigations of Dr Michael Mann of the bogus Hockey Stick and Climate Gate fame. The joke is that they investigated themselves.

  5. I think, Bob, that you are asking for someone to take action against Penn State on moral grounds. I empathise with that. But who, other than the student body, alumni, and fans have the standing to take a moral action, such as a boycott, against the school?

  6. Obviously, I have not thought this through. There is no ruling body above the university other than the State of Pennsylvania, and I don’t see anything coming out of a political body in that or any state to punish one of their most popular institutions. There are laws to deal with the individuals involved in the crimes, and there is the NCAA to oversee the integrity of the athletic programs. Probably the best way to punish the institution is through the athletic department. Given that Penn State is a perennial power in football, penalizing that program might be effective.

    Having said all that, there is still no way for those young boys and men to recover their damages, except through civil action. I would expect to see some of that.

    OK. I have pretty much chewed on this enough. Thanks for the comments, Jim.

  7. It was hard to like Penn State in the first place. They were always beating some team I liked. However, I try to not let my choices of football teams cloud my judgement in this case.

  8. I just feel SO sorry for those kids going there NOW, and the athletes there NOW, who had nothing to do with any of it, that’s all 😦

  9. You have a point. The current student body and athletes chose to go to Penn State because they thought it was a great school to attend. It turns out to be a different story, now. Now, they are learning that they cannot live on a reputation established by those who came before. They have to build their own reputation, and salvage their institution’s reputation.I think that it is just par of life.

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